Search Indigenous Plant Attributes

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  1. Acacia brevispica

    Acacia brevispica (=Senegalia brevispica) is a hardy, semi-deciduous, robust, prickly, scrambling Acacia that can be trained into a large beautiful shrub.

    It has feathery, large, soft, bipinnate leaves with small hook thorns along the ribs on the underside.

  2. Turraea floribunda

    Turraea floribunda is a hardy, small, deciduous tree with a rounded crown of olive-green leaves that have distinct herringbone design veins.

    It drops its leaves in early spring and then the clusters of sweetly scented, large white flowers are borne in profusion along the bare stems (September to November).

    The beautiful green and white Honeysuckle-type flowers adorning the tree are a sight to behold and the scent is divine. The pretty red seeds are borne on large woody star-shaped pods.

    It is an important host tree for butterflies and moths and attracts many sunbirds and seed eating birds to the garden.

    This attractive tree is ideal for a small garden. Plant in well-drained, compost rich soil. Grows best in full sun.

    Size 3 to 5m

  3. Pavetta lanceolata

    Pavetta lanceolata is a hardy, small, evergreen shrub or small tree with attractive dark foliage.

  4. Aristea ecklonii

    Aristea ecklonii is hardy, evergreen, clump-forming, perennial bulbous plant with narrow, strap-like, slightly pleated leaves that are carried in a fan.

    It bears flowering stems of amazing pale to deep mauve-blue flowers from August to March. There is a white flowered form grown at Random Harvest nursery (see gallery of pictures).

    It requires morning sun as the flowers open in succession early in the day and close in the afternoon. 

    It grows best in moist conditions near ponds or well-watered areas.

  5. Kleinia fulgens

    Kleinia fulgens is a hardy, attractive, evergreen succulent plant with a creeping, tuberous rootstock. It has broad, flattened, slightly fleshy stalkless leaves that arise directly from a fleshy stem. They are grey-green with a purple margin.

    The clusters of bright-orange or scarlet flowers are carried on long, flowering stems from January to August. The flowers attract pollinating insects to the garden.

    This long-flowering plant will brighten up a rockery or mixed flowerbed.

    Plant in well-drained soil in full sun or light shade.

    Size: 30cm to 60cm

  6. Freylinia lanceolata

    Freylinia lanceolata is a very hardy, evergreen, fast growing, graceful shrub with a lovely weeping shape. The long, drooping lanceolate leaves add to the shape. Bunches of creamy-yellow, fragrant, tubular flowers, appear in profusion from May to August when little else is flowering.

    A few flowers will appear sporadically during the rest of the year. The flowers smell of honey and their nectar attracts a myriad of butterflies and other insects. It can be clipped into a formal hedge but does need a lot of maintenance. Prune regularly to keep looking neat.

    It grows well in a sunny garden although it does tolerate partial shade. It grows naturally along streams and enjoys wet conditions, but also grows well in a normally irrigated garden.

  7. Barleria elegans

    Barleria elegans is a hardy, evergreen small shrub with oval shaped, dark green leaves that are paler beneath. The reduced leaves are hardened and spiny-toothed. Flowers profusely in late summer and autumn (February to July) with clusters of pure white trumpet-shaped flowers. The flowers attract butterflies and pollinating insects to the garden.

    It is adaptable in the garden, making a good rockery subject and helps to stabilise the soil on embankments. Due to its thorny nature, it can form an effective barrier.

    Prune back after flowering to keep in shape and ensure mass flowering the following year. Can tolerate a light frost. Plant in sun or semi-shade in well drained and well composted soil.

    Size: up to 1m

  8. Salvia muirii

    Salvia muirii is a hardy, evergreen shrublet with light green, almost greyish small leaves. When crushed the leaves release a light, medicinal scent, reminiscent of Vicks. It has a persistent rootstock from which it re-sprouts if damaged. The spikes of intense blue flowers with white lips, are borne on a spike from mid-summer to autumn. They are quite large for the genus, and attract butterflies and bees in abundance.

    The plant is long-lived, drought-resistant and virtually pest free. Plant this useful garden and container plant in compost-rich, well-drained soil in full sun. Prune regularly to keep in shape and encourage flowering.

    Size: up to 30cm

  9. Plectranthus saccatus Purple

    Plectranthus saccatus 'Purple' is a fairly hardy, evergreen, fast-growing perennial, with pale lime-green leaves.

    It has massed sprays of purple flowers in autumn. It looks beautiful when planted in groups and makes an excellent container plant. A white flowered form is also cultivated. Cut back after flowering to keep it looking neat.

    It attracts insects and butterflies and therefore also attracts insectivorous birds to the garden.

    It should be planted in light shade in well-drained, well-composted soil and watered well in summer.

  10. Plectranthus species Victoria Falls

    Plectranthus sp Victoria Falls is a fairly hardy, evergreen, fast-growing, flat, creeping groundcover. It has rounded, quite crinkly, glossy leaves that are slightly succulent.

    The pretty spikes of lilac flowers are borne in autumn and it attracts insects and butterflies to the garden.

    It makes an attractive groundcover in rockeries and is also lovely cascading over walls or in a hanging basket.

    Plant in well-drained compost-rich soil in semi-shade or shade.

    Size: Up to 20cm

  11. Syzygium guineense

    Syzygium guineense is a hardy, small to medium sized, fast-growing, very attractive, evergreen tree with a weeping habit, that can be grown in wet areas and even in shallow water. The bark on young trees is silver becoming pale-grey and patched with many different lichens with age. The grey-green leaves are red when they first appear.

    The heavily scented white flowers with copious nectar have conspicuous, fluffy stamens and are borne in large heads on the tips of the branches from October to May.

    The decorative, edible, shiny, bright-purple fruit are borne in December which turn the tree into a natural Christmas tree. Birds such as bulbuls, starlings, mousebirds and barbets relish the fruit while the fallen fruit is eaten by guinea fowl and francolin. Fruit bats and bush babies also feast on the fruit.

    It is the host plant to the Apricot and Brown Playboy Butterflies.

    The plant also has many traditional and medicinal uses.

    This very variable species can be grown near water as a single specimen or in clumps to create a forest feel.

    Plant in sun or semi-shade.

    Size up to 10 meters.

  12. Geranium caffrum

    Geranium caffrum is a very hardy, evergreen, fast-growing sprawling perennial plant that has beautiful, round leaves that are deeply cleft. The foliage is grey green, and it adds an attractive soft texture to the garden.

    It bears masses of purple flowers with dark purple markings in spring and summer. It attracts insects and butterflies to the garden.

    This plant is very versatile and does well planted on banks, in hanging baskets and containers.

    Prune lightly after flowering. It is not fussy about soil conditions but will not tolerate wet soil. It is at its best in full sun.

    Size: Up to 30cm

  13. Gazania rigens uniflora

    Gazania rigens uniflora is a hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, creeping groundcover with attractive glossy green leaves.

    They are free flowering with beautiful, large clear yellow flowers which are borne from August to February.

    The flowers close in low light so they need to be planted in full sun. Remove the dead flowers to promote a long and floriferous flowering season.

    Needs well-drained soil.

    Ideal for rockeries and containers and for stabilizing soil on banks.

    Size: 15 to 30 cm

  14. Gazania rigens leucolaena Pink

    Gazania rigens leucolaena pink is a hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, creeping groundcover with attractive silvery-grey leaves.

    They are free flowering with beautiful, pink flowers which are borne from August to February.

    The flowers close in low light so they need to be planted in full sun. Remove the dead flowers to promote a long and floriferous flowering season.

    Needs well-drained soil. Ideal for rockeries and containers and for stabilizing soil on banks.

    Size:15-30cm

  15. Allophylus natalensis

    Allophylus natalensis is a hardy, evergreen shrub or small tree with smooth or wrinkled, greyish-brown bark. It has a dense crown of firm, shiny, dark green, Searsia (Rhus)-like, trifoliate leaves.

    Massed clusters of small whitish green, sweetly scented flowers are borne from March to July and attract butterflies and other insects.

    The clusters of conspicuous shiny red, edible berries can weigh the branches down. They make a lovely show from June to August and attract birds.

    A beautiful tree for small gardens as well as a great screening plant that can also form a decorative, specimen shrub once established.

    Plant in sun or shade, in well drained soil.

    Size: 2 to 5 meter